Nightmare Manor - 2022 Review
Haunted Attraction Reviewed: Nightmare Manor
Location of Attraction: Middletown Ohio
Date of Review: 9/16/2022
Total Number of Attractions Available: One
Overall Haunted Attraction Rating: 7.5/10
Entertainment & Food Rating: 6/10
Atmosphere Rating: 7/10
Overall Costume & Makeup Rating: 8/10
Overall Cast & Crew Rating: 9/10
Overall Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 8/10
Overall Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7.5/10
Overall Feedback: Our third and final haunt stop of our opening night on the Ohio Haunt Tour brought us to a fairly new attraction located in Middletown Ohio… Nightmare Manor! Swinging a visit to Nightmare Manor was sort of a last minute decision, but when we saw they were selling tickets till 1am we said “why not”, Nightmare Manor sits about 40 minutes north of downtown Cincinnati, an uneventful drive for our squad as we were venturing from USS Nightmare just outside of Cincinnati. We arrived on site at Nightmare Manor around 11:30pm and sure enough they were still open & selling tickets. There’s ample parking on site but parking here does cost $2, so be prepared for that.
With it being Nightmare Manor’s opening night for the 2022 season plus being so late at night there was hardly anyone else onsite. As we stepped outside of our vehicles we heard screams from patrons fleeing the exit of the attraction with a Michael Myers character chasing after taunting the guests. Despite the otherwise dull atmosphere here (early in the season & late at night), we had high hopes for a spooky fun experience! Upbeat music could be heard booming from nearby speakers & a few roaming spooks made their rounds engaging with the few guests still onsite. There was a small snack stand onsite featuring your usual refreshments; rumor has it they plan to notably expand the food options for next season. Our squad is fans of haunt merch and were bummed to learn Nightmare Manor hasn’t quite implemented that into their operation yet, maybe next time.
We swung by the ticket booth and snagged general admission tickets which run for a very reasonable $17 here. Guests can actually save $2 off their ticket by bringing a non-perishable item to be donated to the local community. Nightmare Manor is open Friday’s & Saturday’s from now until the end of October, so still plenty of time for haunt lovers to visit these folks. If you’re onsite by ticket booth closing time you’ll be guaranteed entry into the haunt.
Nightmare Manor is housed in what was previously used as a restaurant. The building itself was built back in 1972 and has a rather unique external appearance, giving off a moderate amount of creepy vibes! Nightmare Manor gears their experience towards that of your classic old-school style haunted house! They rely heavily on their cast & crew to bring the scenes to life & to provide that spooky fun experience we all crave. With our squad being essentially the only group onsite at one point, the cast & crew took advantage of that opportunity & made sure to provide incredibly interactive performances. We felt fully immersed into a hellish nightmare featuring a horror movie marathon! Throughout Nightmare Manor you’ll encounter little to no special effects or animatronics, strictly sticking to that old-school feel. While the scenes themselves may not have been elaborate, they were realistic, detailed, handcrafted, & helped to immerse the guests into the experience. The scenes were crafted to feature a perfect mixture of horror film favorites & original/unique themings. Horror film favorites such as Samara (The Ring), Freddy Krueger, Jason Vorhees, Micheal Myers, Leatherface, Ghost Face, Slenderman, & others were encountered!
These folks take the cake for possessing one of the most realistic Zombie Apocalypse sections. As we stumbled outside the manor doors an army type fellow quickly rounded up our group as he tried to guide us to safety from the Zombie Horde. These zombies were relentless in their attack, appearing out of practically nowhere, one after another. At one point we counted what was at least 6-8 blood-thirsty zombies animatedly chasing after us. In the midst of this horrifying shenanigans out of nowhere came Slenderman, towering about 9’ in the air. Several times the menacing Slenderman character would appear and then disappear in the blink of an eye, taunting our squad all the while the zombie horde was still trying to snack on our limbs. Somehow we made it back into the Manor with all our limbs intact.
We truly have to credit the cast & crew of Nightmare Manor for driving the experience & bringing the attraction to life! There were several standout characters throughout our journey. Leatherface was portrayed by a large fellow who fit the part perfectly, manically wielding a chainsaw & nearly knocking off our limbs. Ghostface dashed into our sight from out of nowhere & of course asked us “What’s your favorite scary movie?”. The clowns were rather intense, as they came barreling out of a toy box to provide a startling encounter. Samara (The Ring) contorted eerily out of the TV sending shivers down our spines. A barn type facade possessed a character dangling a good 10’ in the air that came crashing down from above us to provide a unique scare. An insane asylum patient was rather manic & fully immersed into her role, providing a rather sinister engagement. The demented elf at the end of the attraction throwing snowballs at us while she plugged their Christmas event was a solid touch. And of course we have to give major props to the Zombie Horde & Slenderman. Truly an all around phenomenal performance by the entire Nightmare Manor cast & crew!
After exiting the attraction we had the pleasure to chat with the owner & learn more about his inspiration for the haunt. For only being in their 4th year of operation, Nightmare Manor is well on their way to becoming a force to be reckoned with. There’s not many true old-school style haunts out there anymore but Nightmare Manor executed just that to near perfection. When it comes to old-school style haunts Nightmare Manor would easily be a damn near 10 out of 10 in our eyes! During your roughly 20 minute adventure you’ll encounter 25+ scenes, 50+ live actors, & an abundance of spooky fun! Whether you're an avid haunt goer like our squad or just a casual haunt patron, we have no doubt that you'll have a blast when visiting Nightmare Manor! Job well done Nightmare Manor team. Stay spooky!